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  • March 17, 2020 9:12 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The City of Minneapolis has issued its interpretation of the Sick and Safe Time Ordinance with regard to the current pandemic:

    The Sick and Safe Time ordinance requires the provision of sick leave to workers in the city of Minneapolis. Please be aware that the City of Minneapolis Labor Standards Enforcement Division has posted guidance on its Sick and Safe Time website (and below in bold) to explain how the Sick and Safe Time ordinance is interpreted by the Division during the current pandemic.

    State of Minnesota DEED website also guides businesses and workers during this difficult time, as additional state resources and emergency federal legislation are being rolled out.


    **COVID-19 (CORONAVIRUS) and sick and safe time**

    An employee's accrued sick and safe time hours are legally protected for their use due to Coronavirus symptoms, testing or infection. Protection extends to the employee and the employee's care of a covered family member. Ordinance protection includes, but is not limited to:

    • Coronavirus screening;
    • Care or quarantine due to Coronavirus symptoms or infection;  
    • Testing or quarantine following close personal contact with a Coronavirus infected or symptomatic person;
    • Covered family members' school or place-of-care closure due to Coronavirus; and
    • Workplace closure by order of a public official due to Coronavirus.


    Importantly, many schools and places-of-care have now been closed due to Coronavirus, which triggers ordinance protection for the use of accrued sick and safe time hours in the city for workers who need to care for their children because of those closures. Similarly, when any public official (e.g. Mayor or Governor) orders business closures due to Coronavirus, that order triggers coverage of the ordinance for workers at those businesses. Otherwise, generally, preemptive closure or preemptive self-quarantine is not covered by the Sick and Safe Time ordinance.

    If a worker is infected or symptomatic, they may use any accrued sick and safe time hours. Furthermore, ordinance protection is triggered if a worker has reason to believe they are probably infected. Under those circumstances, as noted in the third bullet (above), self-quarantine ("preventive care" during a global pandemic) would constitute a protected use of accrued sick and safe time.

    The Sick and Safe Time ordinance does not apply once a workers' accrued hours have been exhausted. However, employers and employees are encouraged to be understanding and flexible with each other where possible during this emergency. Nothing in the ordinance prevents an employer from providing workers more generous coverage or benefits. The Federal Medical Leave Act or other state or federal law may also apply.

    Email for further clarification of this guidance. Thank you and stay safe.

  • March 09, 2020 4:34 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    SWBA Brings You Information on Corona Virus Planning

    Cities and regions around the world have started enforcing lockdowns to prevent the spread of the much publicized Corona virus. The Minnesota Department of Health and the CDC are urging businesses to be prepared to respond to ill employees and changing situations.

    Steps You Can Take:

    • Clean surfaces regularly. The EPA has compiled a list of cleaning products known to kill this strain of the virus.
    • Have a Plan for Employee Absence. If the virus becomes widespread here in Minneapolis, you may experience staffing shortages while your employees recover. Consider how you will continue to operate with reduced staff, and consider cross-training staff to help cover for each other. If your employees can perform their work from home, consider allowing them to do so until the spread has been contained.
    • Protect Your Workers. Review your sick leave policies, and encourage sick employees to stay home to prevent spreading illness to your remaining staff. Encourage anyone you work with to refer to the CDC travel notices before taking any trips.
    • Protect Your Customers. Consider alternate ways to deliver your products and services without requiring face-to-face interactions during this time. For business that needs to be conducted in person, consider asking sick visitors to wear a mask or wait until they are better. Make hand sanitizers, tissues and other hygiene products available.
    • Have a Plan for Potential Lockdown. We're hopeful that it won't come to a complete lockdown in Minneapolis to control the spread of this virus, but you may want to plan for the possibility. SWBA is reaching out to city officials to determine if they are considering such a move, and what provisions may be made for small businesses during that time. Watch the SWBA website and Facebook pages for updates. (We'll email any big news too)
    • Refer to Accurate Information from the sources linked on the buttons below.

    National Retailers Info

    MN Department of Health


  • November 18, 2019 2:05 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    DEED’s Launch Minnesota Initiative Offering ‘Innovation Grants’ to Entrepreneurs in Minnesota

    MinnInno - 11/13/19

    Minnesota startups now have a new source of state funding. Launch Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development’s new statewide effort to accelerate startups, is taking applications for Innovation Grants.

  • November 15, 2019 10:58 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

     male hand holding smartphone

    There are some great recommendations to keep you and your team on task in this latest article from the Small Business Administration:

    Best Apps for Small Business Owners

  • November 15, 2019 10:45 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Minnesota Unemployment Holds at 3.2% 

    Labor force participation rate ticked up to 70.3% while the state added more than 7,000 new jobs

  • October 10, 2019 11:43 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Do you utilize freelance or contract workers? Minneapolis is proposing an ordinance that would extend the recent Wage Theft rules to contract workers. If there are any concerning components of the proposal for you, please let us know.

  • October 03, 2019 2:14 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Changes coming up to routes and access:

    ·         The 40th Street bridge will open in early October.

    ·         Both directions of I-35W are closed from 10 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 9 to 5 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 10.

    ·          Both directions of I-35W are closed from 10 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10 to 5 a.m. Friday, Oct. 11.

    ·         Updated The ramp from I-35W south to I-94 west is closed from 10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18 to 5 a.m. Monday, Oct. 21. Detour: Highway 280 to I-94 west.

    ·         Updated The ramp from I-35W north to 3rd/4th/Washington is closed 10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18 to 5 a.m. Monday, Oct. 21.

    ·          Updated The ramp from Highway 55 west to Washington Avenue and 3rd Street is closed from 10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 18 to 5 a.m. Monday, Oct. 21.

  • September 20, 2019 10:40 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Did you know that the local Crime Prevention Specialist will perform a walkthrough of your business for free to help you identify areas for improvement? 

    Contact Jennifer Waisanen at 612-673-5407 or  to make an appointment

  • September 20, 2019 10:37 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Our local precinct appreciates video evidence when trying to track down suspects, but it only helps if the recording exists, is a high enough quality, and captures faces. To help, they put together some general advice regarding surveillance equipment. If you have specific questions, feel free to send them in to SWBA, and we'll help get an expert answer for you.


  • September 19, 2019 1:01 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MN DEED reports that unemployment dropped to 3.3% in August, with an adjusted overall job increase of 1100 jobs.

    Businesses can find resources to help attract and retain talented employees at the new online tool:

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Southwest Business Association is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. Minnesota , P.O. Box 8932, Minneapolis, MN 55408

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